DOUGLAS the Miniature Schnauzer has been praised for helping get an elderly man vital help after he suffered a nasty fall.
The eight-year-old pet of Karen and James Todd came to Eddie Lowry’s rescue in Threemilewater Park.
The 70-year-old, who has suffered a number of strokes, fell on the steps in the park suffering a broken hip.
And almost three weeks after the accident the pensioner is still laid up in hospital needing a partial hip replacement, extensive physiotherapy and rehabilitation to get back on his feet.
Karen and husband James from the Doagh Road were walking through Threemilewater on a cold December morning when Douglas suddenly took off.
“He has never run off like it before,” said Karen.
“We were calling for him to come back but he just kept on going, it was so unlike him. We rushed after him to see where he was off to and found him beside Eddie.
“He had taken a very bad fall, the steps were very slippery and we had to be careful on them.
“Eddie had managed to ring the ambulance on his mobile, but it was so cold and he was in shock and a lot of pain, it was hard to make him out
“We had no idea how long he had been there, it could have been over hour.
“James told the operator where he was and then ran to the ambulance crew to bring them over to where we were.
“By this time a number of other regular walkers had come and they were helping out. Linda McGaughey and Lee Whiteside were a great help - it was bitterly cold and they helped keep Eddie warm while the ambulance men made their way to him.
“The steps were so slippy that they had to get the fire service out to get him into the ambulance.”
She added: “Everyone knows each other with walking their dogs every morning and evening, so we just hope Eddie is ok.”
Eddie’s wife Eastlynn paid tribute to Douglas and those who came to her husband’s rescue.
She said: “Eddie is in a bad way in hospital and he will be there for some time.
“He had to have half his hip replaced so he has to go through physiotherapy to get back on his feet - but he is a very determined man and won’t let this stop him getting back on his feet.
“Eddie loves to walk, he normally takes our son’s dog for a walk but that morning it was too cold and it didn’t want to go out. So Eddie just went himself.
She added: “He was very lucky the people were there when he was, I think he left about 7am and he wasn’t found until after 8am - he was very fortunate.
“Everyone was a fantastic help to him and I was amazed when I heard about what Douglas had done.
“Sometimes dogs have better instincts than us.”